View Mobile Site

Camden girls finish in third after 41-27 setback

Posted: February 12, 2018 3:04 p.m.
Updated: February 13, 2018 1:00 a.m.
Tom Didato/C-I

CAMDEN’S VICTORIA BRICE (24) and teammate ZyAja Cook (2) applied defensive pressure on Columbia’s Shareace Howard (11) while forcing a turnover in Thursday’s game.

Heading into Thursday’s regular season finale with visiting Columbia, Camden girls’ basketball coach Natalie Jeffcoat said the temptation was there to slow the game down and play at a pace which, usually, does not benefit her team.

By beating Columbia and holding the Lady Capitals to under 37 points, Camden would take the second seed in Region 4-AAA which would have had the Lady Bulldogs playing their first home state tournament game in more than a decade. Part of Jeffcoat’s game plan went out the back door when her starting point guard, Tiyana Peterson, sustained a concussion in Tuesday’s win over Indian Land and was forced to watch Thursday’s game from the bench in street clothes.

Without its floor general and one of the team’s top scorers, the Lady Bulldogs wrapped conference play in third place, with a 4-4 record, following a 41-27 loss to Columbia on the Michael G. Culp Court.

By virtue of its finish, Camden (10-8) traveled to meet Emerald (19-1), the top-ranked team in class AAA but runner-up in Region 3, in Monday’s AAA Upper State tourney opener. The winner of that contest will face the winner of the Clinton at Pendleton game in Thursday’s second round. Should Camden had defeated Emerald last night, it will be on the road Thursday.

Peterson’s injury took away Camden’s best ballhandler and quickest player. Her absence led to the Lady Bulldogs’ having to play the Lady Caps straight up and without a gimmick offense.

Jeffcoat said, with all things being equal and having a healthy Peterson at her team’s disposal, she gave hard thought to spreading the floor and forcing Columbia to play a slow down contest, win the game while holding the visitors below the magic 37-point mark.

“When I had Tiyana,” Jeffcoat said, “I thought about pulling the ball out and, maybe, making them go man and running kind of a four corners type offense. When she went down, I wasn’t sure that we would be able to handle the ball well enough to do that.”

The larger visitors scored all but one of their 19 baskets from the field from inside the foul lane with the only one from outside the paint being a foul line jumper. Once Bobby Young’s team had the game comfortably in hand, leading 39-25 after three quarters, the Lady Caps (5-3) milked the clock throughout a fourth quarter in which each side made one basket.

Columbia took control of this game by scoring the first seven points of the night. Camden used a Kiasia Hayes basket from close-range followed by a pair of Imani Wyatt free throws to close the gap to 7-4 with 4:22 showing on the first quarter clock. An eight-foot bank shot from Venus Sumpter drew the hostesses within 9-6 with 2:25 left in the opening period only for Columbia to received a 15-foot jumper from Amina Copeland --- who led all scorers with 12 points --- followed by a Syteria Dorsey putback to give the guests a 13-7 lead after one quarter.

Camden closed the gap to 13-10 when Victoria Brice knocked down a 3-ball to open the second quarter. A series of empty possessions and turnovers helped Columbia to a half-closing 10-2 run as the Lady Capitals headed to the locker room holding a 27-15 halftime advantage.

Jeffcoat said her team never got into a rhythm on the offensive end of the floor.

“We really didn’t,” she said. “It seemed like early on, we did have a couple good looks. Against a good team like Columbia, you really have to capitalize on those. 

“We really dug ourselves a 7-0 hole to begin with before putting anything on the board. We missed a lot of free throws tonight. We just didn’t do the things you need to do in order to beat a good team like Columbia.”

Camden would never close the gap to less than 10 points in the second half. In the third quarter, a pair of 15-foot jumpers from Sumpter kept the Lady Bulldogs close. Two Hayes free throws with 3:38 to go in the third made it 35-25 but Columbia used a pair of putbacks from Dorsey to cushion its lead to 39-25 heading into the final stanza.

Jeffcoat said her team’s turnovers did not help in trying to come back against a well-coached Columbia squad. Part of the reason for those struggles was not having Peterson to break down a defense.

“We were really disappointed not to be able to have Tiyana,” Jeffcoat said. “I felt that over the last couple games that we really started playing well and she is certainly an important part of the puzzle for us. She’s our primary ballhandler and she is the one who gets us started. We definitely missed her tonight.”

Columbia (41): Amina Copeland 6 0-0 12, Syteria Dorsey 4 1-2 9, Shareace Howard 2 0-0 4, India Porter 4 1-1 9, Bethany Brown 2 0-1 4, Ahlexandria DeLoache 1 1-1 3. Totals: 19 3-5 41

Camden (27): Imani Wyatt 2 2-4 6, Kiasia Hayes 1 2-2 4, Venus Sumpter 3 2-4 8, Amber Hadden 1 1-2 3, Victoria Brice 1 0-0 3, Whitley Kahler 1 1-5 3. Totals: 9 8-17 27

Score by quarters: First: Columbia, 13-7; Halftime: Columbia, 27-15; Third: Columbia, 39-25. Three-point goals: Columbia none, Camden 1 (Brice)


Commenting not available.
Commenting is not available.

Contents of this site are © Copyright 2018 Chronicle Independent All rights reserved. Privacy policy and Terms of service

Powered by
Morris Technology
Please wait ...